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August 15, 2014

Pictures of Passover at Home and at the Synagogue in Berlin From ca. 1946 to the 1950s

Passover is an important biblically derived Jewish festival. The Jewish people celebrate Passover as a commemoration of their liberation over 3,300 years ago by God from slavery in ancient Egypt that was ruled by the Pharaohs, and their freedom as a nation under the leadership of Moses. It commemorates the story of the Exodus as described in the Hebrew Bible especially in the Book of Exodus, in which the Israelites were freed from slavery in Egypt.

Here, below is a collection of black and white photographs show Passover at home and at the synagogue in Berlin in 1945 from ca. 1946 to ca. 1950s.

A child asking her elders ritual question during the Passover seder.

A woman and her child reading the bulletin board outside a synagouge during Passover.

Jewish men attending the synagogue during Passover.

A family and their guests having Passover Eve seder.

Torah scrolls being read to the congregation in the synagogue during Passover.

Arm of Gunter Ruschin, with visible concentration camp tattoo, holding book w. question and answers of the exodus of Jews from Egypt during Passover.

Chief Cantor Ruschin holding Torah scrolls up to the worshipers at the synagogue during Passover.

Jewish congregation observing synagouge services during Passover.

German Jews who survived concentration camps worshipping at the synagogue during Passover.

Three leading representatives of the Berlin Jewish community during Passover at the synagogue.

Exterior of a Berlin synagogue during Passover.

Tasting bitter herbs, symbolizing hardships of ancient Jews in Egyptian slavery, during the Passover seder.

Germans Jews praying in their synagogue during Passover.

A family and their guests having Passover Eve seder.

Gunter Ruschin praying at the synagogue during Passover.

(Photos by Walter B. Lane, via LIFE archives)


  1. I'd recheck the original source for these photos. Given that in the spring of 1945 the war was still going on, it seems highly unlikely that Passover would be so openly celebrated in a Berlin under siege, let alone that the camps would only just have been liberated, hence the survivors would not look anything like this.

  2. It's 1946 - you can see dates on second photo.

  3. That is NOT Berlin in 1945…...




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